The Spirit-Filled Life

The Spirit-Filled Life

The Spirit-Filled Life is a sermon teaching us that believers are to live as children of light, being equipped and empowered by the Holy Spirit to complete God’s will in our lives.

Key verses:
Ephesians 5:8-20

The Church in Ephesus

We are looking today at Ephesians chapter five. The book of Ephesians was written to the church of Ephesus. The city of Ephesus was wholly given over to idolatry and particularly worshipped the goddess, Diana.

As a matter of fact, we read in the book of Acts when Paul and others went there and began a church at Ephesus, they had a riot in the town. They ended up in the city stadium as we would call it, they had a different name for it of course. But they ended up there and there was a big uproar. They were going to stone some people and they were going to see some people give their lives up. Paul had to be smuggled out of town and that is not the only place that happened. Some people say that everywhere Paul went there was either a revival or a riot and that is pretty much true.

But this is years later, and Paul is writing a letter to the church at Ephesus. The book of Ephesians has many aspects to it. It is the primary work in the New Testament on what the local church is and what the body of Christ is and helps us to understand that. It also, Paul instructs on many other things. He shows us throughout the book the contrast between the believer and the unbeliever, between those who are saved and those who are not saved. There is so much to learn from the book of Ephesians. We are only going to look at a small portion of it this evening. But it is an important portion. This morning we talked about the Spirit of Truth. This evening, we will talk about the spirit-filled life.

Ephesians 5:8: “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:”

Ephesians 5:9: “(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)”

Ephesians 5:10: “Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.”

Ephesians 5:11: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

Ephesians 5:12: “For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.”

Ephesians 5:13: “But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.”

Ephesians 5:14: “Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.”

Ephesians 5:15: “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,”

Ephesians 5:16: “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

Ephesians 5:17: “Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.”

Ephesians 5:18: “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

Ephesians 5:19: “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;”

Ephesians 5:20: “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;”

I call your attention to verse eighteen:

Ephesians 5:18: “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

Spirit-Filled in the Old Testament

Every believer has the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We said this morning when you receive Jesus as your Savior, you do not receive one-third of the trinity, you receive Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Since the day of Pentecost, every believer is indwelled by the Spirit of God. Now, that was not true in the Old Testament times. In Old Testament times, the Holy Spirit would come upon people and would leave people, and you have great examples of that.

Samson is one of the great examples of that. Samson, no doubt, was a very strong man physically speaking. I do not think there is any question about that. Some people say he was just a small, skinny fella – not likely. But his great feats were accomplished when he was empowered by the Spirit of God.

Prior to that, was a man named Bezalel. I came across somebody the other day named Bezalel. Well, that is the only person I came across in modern times with that name. But it is an honorable name. Bezalel was not a major character in many ways in scripture, but he was the man God filled with the Holy Spirit to build the tabernacle in Moses’ day. Moses had all the plans, he had all the materials together, but Bezalel and those under him actually built the tabernacle. That was his task.

Samson filled with the Spirit did his mighty feats of strength as a judge in Israel, to deliver Israel. But there came a point when the Holy Spirit left Samson and he lost his strength. This is good to point out: Samson did not lose his strength because he got the world’s most famous haircut. The problem with him getting that haircut was that he broke a vow that he had taken. What caused him to lose his strength is that the Holy Spirit left him.

As a matter of fact, after the haircut, he gets up and he did not know or did not realize that the Holy Spirit had left him. Why did he not realize that? Being filled with the spirit is not just a feeling and so Samson probably did not feel any different. It is not a matter of feeling. You may ask, “Preacher, if I am filled with the Spirit, I won’t feel it?” Not necessarily, you might feel something, but not necessarily. It is not about a feeling. It is far more important than that. Our feelings change. Our feelings come and go.

But Samson was equipped. Throughout the Bible, we read that people are filled with the Spirit in order to accomplish the work God has called them to do. For Bezalel, it was building the tabernacle. For Samson, it was delivering the people of Israel. For King Saul, it was being the first king of Israel. The Holy Spirit comes upon King Saul at the time he is anointed to be king of Israel. And then, toward the end of his reign, the Holy Spirit left King Saul. And the Holy Spirit filled David because he was going to be king. Does the Holy Spirit work in one person at a time? No, that is not true. These were particular tasks that these people were called to do because it was God’s will.

God’s Task for You

Now, listen to me, God has a task for you. It may not be to deliver Israel. It may not be to be a king. It might be more like building a tabernacle. It might be something where you do not get the glory. People who have been around church or been around the Bible at all, if you mentioned King Saul, most everybody is going to know who you are talking about. You mention Samson, even people who do not know the Bible have some idea of who he was.

I remember years ago we were at a teen activity and doing Bible a game where you put blanks on the board and people try to guess the answer. The clue was “strong man” from in the Bible. One young girl says, “I know what it is.” And she said, “Hercules.” No, it was not Hercules. Hercules is not in the Bible. He is known as being a strongman but not in the Bible. The answer was obviously, Samson.

So, what we are trying to get across to you is this: People are called by God to a specific task of service. Some of them with great glory, like being a king. Some of them, not so much glory, just building a tabernacle, and most people studying the Bible do not remember your name. But that does not mean you did not do a great work for God.

I am quite certain when we get into eternity, two things are going to surprise us. Number one, who is there and who is not there, that is going to surprise us. There will be people who we never thought would be there and there will not be people there who we thought would be there. But another thing that is going to surprise us, I believe, is when the Lord at his judgment seat, gives out eternal rewards. I am sure people are going to come up that the Lord is going to give reward to, and you and I are going to look at each other and wonder who that is. It is not going to be somebody we know, it is not a famous person, not a person who made history, humanly speaking, but they served God faithfully and they will receive the great reward.

Fulfilling God’s Will

Every believer has the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, but the power, the fullness of the power of the Holy Spirit is given so we may fulfill the will of the Lord in our life. Now, this, in particular, involves the calling we each have in our life, and we do have a calling to serve the Lord. It is not the same for everybody. Not everybody is called to do the same thing. You do what God calls you to do and you will be doing the right thing. But it involves our duty to be witnesses for the Lord and that is for every believer, that we witness for the Lord. Every believer is supposed to be a testimony for the Lord. Every believer is supposed to point others to the Savior.

It also involves our daily walk with the Lord. Those two are connected. Because if you are talking to people about the Lord but your daily walk does not back up your talk, then you are going to be seen as a hypocrite. You are not going to lead people to the Lord that way.

But on the other side of that same coin, if you are living a godly life, but nobody knows what makes you live the life you live, you have not quite completed the mission. You will come short. What happens, in that case, is that they will not think what a hypocrite you are, but what a good person you are. But they will not know it is the Lord Jesus that makes you that good person. That is our job, to live the example and let folks know who it is who makes us who we are.

So, Paul has some great instructions for us. Let’s go back to verse eight where Paul says:

Ephesians 5:8: “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:”

What does Paul mean when he says, “For ye were sometimes darkness”? He is saying that we, mankind, are lost in sin. There is no question about that. We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God – sin separates us. Isaiah writes that our sins have separated us from God. We are separated from God by our sins and are lost in the darkness of this world.

So, Paul says, you were (past tense) sometimes darkness (there was a time when you lived in darkness, particularly, right here in Ephesians, you followed Diana, a false goddess), but now, you have trusted the Lord as your Savior (you were lost in that darkness). Now, you are a light in the Lord – a simple conclusion to verse eight. Walk as children of the light – you have been saved, your life has changed, your sins are forgiven, you are on your way to Heaven – live like it. Do not live the same way you lived before.

Darkness vs. Light

And then Paul touches on something here that he elaborates more in Galatians, but in verse nine, he says:

Ephesians 5:9: “(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)”

Let’s talk for a second on the fruit of the Spirit. The fruit of an apple tree is what? Apples. The fruit of a grapevine is? Grapes. The fruit of an orange tree is? Oranges. The fruit of a strawberry bush is? Strawberries. Ok, and the fruit of a Christian is? Christians. The fruit of a Christian is other Christians. We are to be reproducing. So, what are the fruits of the Spirit? The fruit of the Spirit is to reproduce Himself in our lives. Look again in verse nine:

Ephesians 5:9: “(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)”

What the Holy Spirit does in the fruit of the Spirit is to reproduce Himself in us so that we live like the Savior. That is the fruit of the Spirit. And he goes on in verse ten:

Ephesians 5:10: “Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.”

So, the fruit of the Spirit is to bear out in us a Christlike life. If you go back and read through chapter four of Ephesians, you will see that very clearly. But the fruit of the Spirit is for us to live a Christlike life. In doing that, we go to verse eleven:

Ephesians 5:11: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

What does that mean? It means we are not supposed to participate in the sins that we did before we were saved or those around us are doing currently. People always bring up that Jesus ate with publicans and sinners. He certainly did. What Jesus did not do is sin with publicans and sinners. So, what does that teach us? We are not to live a monastic life. We are not to go into a monastery and have no contact with the outside world. How would you be able to influence anyone for the Lord if you did that? We could not.

We are to be involved in the world as in His high priestly prayer in John chapter seventeen, “these are in the world but not of the world.” So, we are supposed to be in the world as witnesses and light-bearers, and as Christ-bearers in the world, but we are not to be of the world. We are not to be participating in the world’s sin. And so, Paul says:

Ephesians 5:11: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

To reprove means to point out that which is wrong.

Ephesians 5:12: “For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.”

I have seen this with young people, teenagers largely, but I have seen it in adults as well. When somebody gets saved and comes to know the Lord, and they not only want to hang out with their old friends, but they want to participate in the same activities they did before. That generally does not work out well.

Why not? Because they usually end up doing those same activities again, the same things they were doing before. Is that problematic? Well, you are not going to win anybody to the Lord that way. “But we were friends.” Granted, you were friends. I had friends I knew before I was saved, and I still count them as friends. I have friends right now, who I am positive do not know the Lord as their Savior. I like to be with these people, I like to talk with them, I like to spend time with them, but I do not participate in certain activities with them and that is the way it has to be. Verse twelve again:

Ephesians 5:12: “For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.”

“In secret” refers to the things that people do that nobody knows about. Do not ever get deceived by that. “I’m just going to do this little thing, and nobody will know.” Well, for one, you know so somebody knows, and number two, God knows. And if you and God know, there is a good chance other people are going to know as well. It is not likely that you will be doing something and no one else will ever know it.

Ephesians 5:13: “But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.”

This is what Jesus was talking about in John chapter three. Where he said:

John 2:19: “And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”

John 2:20: “For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.”

John 2:21: “But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.”

You do not want the light to shine on you because you are doing something wrong. That is why most crime is at night rather than in the daytime. People are emboldened today and commit crimes in the daytime to be sure, but more happens at night. I know a business not too far from here that was open for many years 24/7. And then ten years or so ago, one night around midnight, people came in to rob the business, some people were shot, and some people were shot at, and they do not stay open 24/7 anymore. The business is still there, but they close fairly early in the night, and they do not stay open all night anymore. You can understand why.

Coming Into the Light

So, the point we are trying to get across to you is this: Darkness is associated with that which is wrong. Darkness is associated with those who are lost. And so, we come into the light. We come into the light so that things are made visible.

Ephesians 5:14: “Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.”

The word “wherefore” referring to all that was previously mentioned. This verse is a call to salvation. We are dead in trespasses and sins and the same book of Ephesians tells us that in chapter two that we are dead in our trespasses and sin. But we come to be born again, we come to awake to the light of Christ. Now, that is the contrast between the unsaved person and the believer.

Ephesians 5:15: “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,”

Because you have been born again, because you have come from darkness to light, because you have come from death to life, walk circumspectly. That word “circumspectly” simply means this: “circum” meaning circle and “spectly,” meaning able to see, to be on guard on all sides, be aware of what is going on around you – that is what the word means.

Be aware of what is going on around you, so you do not get surprised by unpleasantries. You certainly do that when you are driving, you need to know what is ahead of you, what is beside you, and behind you. It could be bad for you if you do not know those things. Just walking along on a city street somewhere, even in your own home, be aware of what is happening around you. Be alert, be cognizant of what is going on:

Ephesians 5:15: “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,”

Using Our Time Wisely

Ephesians 5:16: “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

What is he saying? He is saying we live in a time when the world is growing progressively worse. It has been for a long time, and it is going to continue to get progressively worse. If you do not think that is true, all you have to do is read a newspaper or watch the news. Listen to the news and you will see things are getting progressively worse. That has been prophesied for a long time and it has been happening for a long time.

So, our job is to redeem the time. You only have a certain amount of time to live. None of us know how much time we have. You are allotted a certain amount of time to live. Redeem that time, use that time and use it wisely. The time is running out.

Ephesians 5:17: “Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.”

“Be ye not unwise” – this is the second time he told us. What is he saying in this passage? He is saying you need to find out what it is that God wants you to do and then do it.

I have said this many times in many places and I am going to say it again right here, right now, one of the saddest things in the life of individuals is this: The average person never stops to consider what God would have them to do with their life. Therefore, they never stop and ask God, “Lord, what would you have me to do?” The average person just lives their life for themselves. They go on about their business but never consider what would God have them to do. Consequently, they miss out on the blessings of having served the Lord.

So, he tells us here, “be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.” The will of the Lord might be for you to be a king as Saul or David were, but probably not. Why do I think that? Look around the world and look throughout history, how many people get to be kings? Not many. Out of the population in this world, not many are called to be kings. So, most likely, God has something else for you besides being a king.

When I was in high school, we read the play “Anna and the King.” Boy, I liked the king in that play and wanted that job, I wanted to do what he does, and as you probably know, I did not get that job. But the fact of the matter is, few people do.

So, consider what God has for you. It is probably not to be a king. Maybe it is to be a strongman, and it could be, there are a lot more strongmen than kings. But maybe it is to do something like Bezalel did. Maybe it is just to do a task that needs to be done. And you are not going to get a lot of fame or a lot of glory, but you are going to accomplish God’s will if you do that. And you are going to build something and help other people.

Ephesians 5:18: “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

“Be not drunk with wine” – people debate about that: It is OK to drink wine as long as you do not get drunk. Well, I suppose you could say that. But let me share this with you. One sure way to never get drunk is to not drink wine in the first place. It works really well that way. “Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess” – Paul gives a contrast here just like he did with light and darkness, the saved and the unsaved.

Here is the contrast, “Be not drunk with wine” – they call alcoholic drinks today “spirits.” Do you think they are filled with demons? Know I do not. They all have alcohol, and the alcohol affects your brain and other parts of your body too. It affects your brain and affects how you think.

And many people drink to take away their inhibitions. Can I share something with you? Inhibitions do not necessarily need to be taken away. Sometimes you need them. “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess;” causes people to do what they normally would not do.

But by contrast, “be filled with the Spirit;” do not let the wine control you, let the Spirit of God control you. That is the contrast he is talking about. We worked hard to get to this point, but this is the main point. “Be not drunk with wine [oinos] … but be filled with the Spirit [in Hebrew, Arón Ha-Kodesh]” – be filled with the Spirit of God.

A New Song

What does it look like when you are filled with the Spirit of God? He tells us:

Ephesians 5:19: “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;”

That is part of what it looks like. A psalm is a sacred song usually accompanied by an instrument. If you read the psalms, many of them say “for an instrument of ten strings” or similar. A hymn is a sacred song to praise God and all that He has done and all that He continues to do. A spiritual song is a song that belongs to the Lord. They all sound similar, and they are similar. They have slight distinctions between them, but they are similar. All of them are sacred songs – psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.

So, what does that mean? We talked about this a couple of weeks ago, when the believer is born again, he or she comes to be able to sing a new song, not the old song of this world, but a new song. You may have heard that a lot of the old hymns that were written years ago, go back to the 1700s and 1800s. And they were borrowing songs, put new words to them, and sang them as hymns. Here is what I think about that. There may be some cases where that is true but that is not generally true. There may be exceptions to that.

For example, there is a song in our hymn book, and it is a great song. You can sing an old cowboy song that goes exactly to the same tune. What am I talking about? Well, the song in our hymn book, “I Found a Friend in Jesus … He is the lily of the valley…” – there is an old cowboy song called “Little Joe, the Wrangler” that has exactly the same tune. Now, here is your question: Was it a hymn first, or was it an old cowboy song first? And in that case, does it matter? Because that old cowboy song does not talk about drinking and carousing and anything like that. It talks about Little Joe Wrangler, who did not know much but he got hired on to the cattle drive anyway. Then they had a big storm one night that caused the cattle to stampede, and Little Joe took the lead out there, but he did not make it and they found him in the morning down in a ditch with his horse and he was gone.

There is nothing spiritual about that or nothing particularly unspiritual about that. There is nothing particularly Christian about that or unchristian about that. Do you see what I am saying? So, is it OK to use the same tune? Yes, I think it is. But, think about this, there are other songs I know that are written to be sung to the Lord and people took those tunes and used them for blasphemy against the Lord. So, who had the tune first? Well, God did and then man took it and corrupted it.

For most of the hymns in your hymnbook, you look at who wrote the tune. If you look at your hymn book at the top of the page where it gives the title of the hymn, on the left side is one name and on the right side is another name. On the left side, is the name of the person who wrote the lyrics. On the right side, is the person who wrote the music.

And if you go through there and look at the back of the hymnbook and look up the index of composers, you are going to find most of these people were godly men and women who served the Lord or loved the Lord and wrote these tunes. You are going to find that others are famous people, like Hayden, Beethoven, and Handel. Really? Yes, that is what you are going to find. But you are not going to find anywhere in there an “old barroom tune.” It never says that. The closest that it will come to that is “traditional American tune,” something like that. Check it out, you do not have to take my word for this.

What am I saying? I am saying there is a difference between the music that is sung to the Lord and the music that we sing in the world. Not every song in the world is bad. The old Joe the Wrangler is not a bad song. If it is sung somewhere, I am not going to say “don’t sing that terrible blasphemous song” because it is not a terrible and blasphemous song. There is no reason you could not sing it. We will not probably use those words in the service here, but it is not doing damage to the Lord or your testimony or anything like that.

There are love songs, beautiful love songs that were written, we will not be singing those in church either. They have their appropriate time and place. This is not it. Am I making sense to you? OK, that is the difference in the songs – psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs that we sing.

Ephesians 5:20: “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;”

The saved person not only has a new song, a new walk, and a new way of life, but they also have a new gratitude. We saw it this morning when Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my commandments.”

Living a Spirit-Filled Life

The Spirit-filled life is the life that is lived when you are filled with the Spirit every day. Are you automatically filled with the Spirit every day? The answer to that question is: no. You, as a believer always have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit but you are not always filled with the spirit. How do you get filled with the Spirit? Very simple. You ask Him to fill you. Do I do that as a preacher? Often, very often, at least every time I preached and other times as well.

But suppose you are not preaching; you are not standing behind the pulpit. You want to witness to somebody, but you are timid, and you do not know how, you do not feel you have the words or ability, then ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Pray, you do not have to pray out loud for this, but you could. You could pray in your heart, “Lord help me to find the words to speak to this person to convey your message to them.” You can do that. I do that all the time.

Sometimes, people come in here for counsel. I will be honest with you, people come in and I do not always know the answer to their situation. What do you do? Pray and ask the Lord to give you the answer. There is so much the Lord will do for you if you pray and just ask Him to do it. Now, think about this. You pray and ask Him to save you. Did He save you? Then if you pray and ask Him to fill you with the Spirit, do you think He might do that? Jesus talked about that, but we will not turn to that passage tonight. He talked about that, “If ye, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give through the Spirit give to those who ask Him?” Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you.

But understand this is not a continual thing. You are filled with the Spirit, and something happens in your life, and you are not filled with the Spirit. And you need to be filled with the Spirit how often? Every day. The Spirit-filled life is a continual thing.

A great preacher was once preaching in a camp setting, and not here, preaching on being filled with the Spirit. He said after he finished his message, he left the platform and a young man came up to him and looked him in the eye and said, “Brother are you filled with the Spirit now?” It was a good question. “You just stood and talked to us about being filled with the Spirit, but you are not standing and talking about that now and walking with the rest of us. Are you filled with the Holy Spirit now?” I am not going to answer that question but what I am trying to get you to see is that you need to pray often to be filled with the Spirit. It is not a permanent situation. The Indwelling is a permanent situation.

“Why, I have been taught that if you are filled with the Spirit, you can speak in tongues.” Well, in Acts chapter two, the apostles were filled with the Spirit and spoke in tongues. And in Acts, chapter eight, Cornelius and his household were filled with the Spirit and spoke in tongues. And there is maybe one other case like that.

Let me ask you something, Bezalel was filled with the Spirit, did he speak in tongues? No. King Saul was filled with the Spirit, did he speak in tongues? No. David was filled with the Spirit, did he speak in tongues? No. Let me give you another one. John the Baptist was out baptizing one day, and a young man comes up to him and says he wants to be baptized. That young man was Jesus of Nazareth. You can find out more in Matthew chapter three if you want to check out what I am telling you.

And John says to Jesus that “I have need to be baptized of thee, and cometh thou to me?” In other words, he is saying, if one of us is going to baptize the other one, it should be you baptizing me. Jesus says, “Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.” Jesus was saying to do it, it was the right thing to do. And when he was baptized, Jesus came up out of the water and the Spirit of God descended upon Him like a dove.” And did Jesus speak in tongues? No, He did not.

So, what is speaking in tongues? I will tell you exactly what it is. You can read it in Acts chapter two, and it will tell you exactly what it is. The apostles were given a miraculous gift of speaking in other languages that were not theirs and they had not learned for the purpose of communicating the Gospel to people of other languages. That is exactly what happened in Acts chapter two.

What about Cornelius and his friends? It was similar because Cornelius was a Roman soldier, and his family was of who knows what nationality. What do I mean? The Roman army was made up of people from all over. And so, they did not all speak the same language. They did on that day.

In I Corinthians chapter fourteen, Paul gives strict instruction on this very same subject. Most of the time in the Bible, I would venture to say 98% of the time when somebody is filled with the Spirit, they do not speak in tongues. It is not the usual manifestation.

Equipped and Empowered

The usual manifestation is that they are equipped and empowered to do the task that God has given them to do. That’s it? That’s it.

The apostles were filled with the Spirit to write the books of the New Testament. And the other scripture writers were filled with the Spirit to write the books of the Bible. Isaiah writes, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me for He hath anointed me.” Was he speaking prophetically? Yes, he was. What do you suppose was happening all those times in the Old Testament where the writer says, “Thus sayeth the Lord”? Who is speaking, the writer or the Lord? It is the Lord.

On and on we go, and we see that the fullness of the Spirit is given to equip individuals to do the plan and purpose of God in their life – the specific thing He wants us to do. So, let the Holy Spirit bless you. Let the Holy Spirit use you. Let the Holy Spirit guide you.

When you are reading your Bible and you do not understand, we talked about this morning, pray to the Holy Spirit to teach you what the scripture is saying. Let’s suppose you want to study Ephesians chapter five. Before you study, you say, “Lord, help me to understand what I am reading, what it is about.” As you are reading, you say, “Lord, give me an understanding of what I am reading right now.” And after you have read it, think about it, meditate on it, and ask, “Lord, help me to understand what I have just read.” That is the work of the Holy Spirit.

Sometimes I have people say to me things like, “You have a remarkable understanding of scripture.” I do not have anything that anybody else cannot get, I do not. I do not have this special knowledge that people do not have. You get the same knowledge if you study the scriptures, and you pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide you and you will know everything I do and more. Do not doubt that; do not doubt that at all.

Let the Holy Spirit bless you, use you, guide you and follow His leadership. Let Him lead you each day, each step of your life. That is what the Spirit-filled life looks like. Godly people guided by the Spirit of God through the Word of God to do the will of God – that is the Spirit-filled life. We will talk more about the fullness of the Spirit in a future service, I am pretty sure of that.

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Dr. Michael L. McClure, our lead pastor, is known for his in-depth knowledge and effective teaching style of biblical truths applicable to every day living.

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